Amid Abuse Scandal, L.A. Diocese Mulls $200-Million Drive

Facing renewed controversy over its handling of sexual abuse by clergy, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles is considering launching a $200-million campaign to bolster church finances that have been hard hit by the scandal, reports the Los Angeles Times.

The archdiocese has retained Guidance In Giving Inc., a New York-based fundraising consultant for Catholic organizations, to study the feasibility of mounting what would be its first capital campaign in more than 60 years.

Funds raised might offset the costs of repaying $175-million in loans taken out in conjunction with a $660-million settlement the diocese reached in 2007 with hundreds of abuse victims.

Public anger over abuse cases flared anew following the release last month of court files showing how a former archbishop, Cardinal Roger Mahony, and another ranking diocese official tried to hide incidents of molestation from police in the 1980s and 1990s.

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